Candle making has become one of the most enjoyable leisure activities around, having candles evolved from a functional source of light to a decorative accent with a range of uses and benefits. It could be ideal to start your own business or simply want to continually fill your home with beautiful, aromatic, handmade candles in your favourite designs, colours, and scents. Either way, it piqued your curiosity as well as your creative self.
You may have then asked yourself this question, “Where can I find candle supplies near me?” to get started. You want to know then what candle supplies are needed, and of course, where to find the high quality ones. In that case, you have come to the right blog. We, at N-essentials Australia, recognise the need for such, and so in this article, we will provide you with a list of all the candle making supplies and candle scents you'll need.
WAX FOR CANDLE MAKING
Wax is a flammable, carbon-containing solid that, when heated above room temperature, transforms into a liquid. When you light a scented candle, the wax melts, vaporises, and burns, which emits heat and light. It is the candle's fuel to put it simply and perhaps the most vital ingredient for candle making.
There are many types of candle wax available today for making candles: some are either natural, synthetic or a combination of both, and each has its own set of characteristics. Here, we narrowed it down to two: paraffin wax and beeswax.
Paraffin wax, also known as mineral wax, is one of the most versatile and widely used waxes for candle making nowadays. The crude oil refining process produces paraffin wax as a by-product. It's a white, odourless, tasteless, "waxy" solid with a melting point of about 110 to 150 degrees celsius and it burns well despite being very inert.
It's a popular option for many high-end candle brands because it retains colour and fragrance well. Since it comes in a variety of melt points, paraffin wax is ideal for making pillars, pots, votives, tealights, tapers, and tarts, among other types of candles.
Paraffin wax also can contain a lot of fragrance and is, therefore, a good choice if you want your candle to have a strong scent.
Beeswax has been used in the production of candles for thousands of years, while waxes made from coconut, soy and petroleum (such as paraffin wax) are recent inventions.
It is easier to melt and measure beeswax if it's in a beaded shape. It's also water-proof and mildew-resistant. It's still pliable at 38 degrees celsius and has a melting point between 62 and 65 degrees celsius. Beeswax has a faint, sweet fragrance and a golden colour.
Beeswax can also help purify the air and is smokeless and sootless. It is suitable for harder, more stable waxes that are often used in container candle blends or to make unscented pillar candles.
WICKS FOR CANDLE MAKING
Choosing the right wick is critical. The wick used in a candle has an impact on how evenly it burns, how quickly it burns, and how much smoke and soot it produces.
Moreover, the wick is responsible for delivering fuel (wax) to the candle's flame. The wick serves as a fuel pump, drawing liquefied wax up into the flame and keeping it burning. It is made up of a twisted, braided, or knitted bundle of fibres. The candle's absorbing factor is then the said fibres, which absorb liquefied wax and transport it to the flame through capillary action.
There are several different types of candle wicks, each with its own set of characteristics. However, almost all candle wicks fall into one of three categories:
- Flat Wicks: One of the most popular wick designs. These are usually made from three bundles of fibre knitted together which burns very evenly. For a self-trimming effect, they curl in the flame. This candle wick is used in pillars and tapers, which are moulded free-standing candles.
- Square Wicks: Square wicks have a similar appearance to flat braided wicks, but they are not as flat. They're usually braided or knitted. These will curl in the blaze, but they are a little more rounded than flat wicks and will avoid clogging better. The majority of beeswax candles such as tapers, and pillars use this wick.
- Cored Wicks: To hold the braided wick upright, it is wrapped in core material. These wicks have a circular cross-section and are made of a variety of materials, including cotton, paper, zinc, and tin, to stiffen the wick's structure.This wick is used in candles that need to be self-supporting, such as votives, pillars, and novelty candles.
Moving on to wick sizes, they are determined by several factors other than their length. The easiest way to choose the right candle wick is to measure the diameter of the candle container; the greater the diameter, the larger the wick needed.
It's worth noting that if you use a wick that's too big for the candle, the bottle will get too hot and break, and the candle will flame out faster. If you use a wick that is too thin for the candle, it will flame out before the wax is fully consumed.
CANDLE SCENTS FOR CANDLE MAKING
Although candles don’t necessarily need to have a scent, most people who are looking for ingredients to make candles intend to do so. Scented candles are evocative, creating a relaxing and pleasant ambience in the home. It is also a perfect way to subtly add a wonderful fragrance to your space, and cover up unwelcome odours.
The most favoured fragrance agent for scented candles is fragrance oils since it is the most consistent and reliable. These are made using experimental techniques and a variety of aromatic ingredients obtained from nature. Although synthetic ingredients are man-made they can also be found in nature and synthesized using scientific methods.
The soft glow of a flickering candle can be combined with the fresh scent of spring, or the warm and spicy cinnamon and vanilla fragrance instead. There are hundreds and possibly thousands of different fragrance oils available on the market today, including the ones mentioned below:
- Honey Manuka Fragrance Oil
- Kaffir Lime and Coco Fragrance OIl
- Ocean Breeze Fragrance Oil
- Vanilla Fragrance Oil
After you've mixed in your dye, add your oil right away; don't overheat the wax after you've added your oils, say over 200 degrees Celsius. This will keep the fragrance from burning off and allow it to be evenly suspended in the wax once it has cooled.
It's important to note that fragrance can be too heavy, so we recommend making a small test batch to check the intensity to guarantee you like how it smells when it is burned. Start with 1 ounce of fragrance per pound of wax and work your way up.
Essential oils are an alternative to fragrance oils. They are derived from the oil of the plant from which they were extracted and distilled.
Essential oils will impart a clean, natural aroma to your candles and are a lovely way to incorporate personalised aromatherapy blends into your home.
- Lavender Essential Oil
- Peppermint Essential Oil
- Geranium Essential Oil
- Clary Sage Essential Oil
- Frankincense Essential Oil
- Wintergreen Essential Oil
- Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
Although some essential oils are flammable liquids, using them in candle making doesn’t pose a high risk. This is because the wax maintains a steady temperature that falls below the flash points of essential oils. However, it would be prudent to be careful when handling the essential oil and ensure that you don’t accidentally spray the oil into the flame of the candle.
Essential oils don’t smell as strongly as fragrance oils, so may have to compensate by using more of them. You can also try to combine other essential oils to create your unique blend such as bergamot essential oil with lemongrass essential oil for example.
COLOURANTS FOR CANDLE MAKING
With an almost infinite range of colours, from luminous ivory and pastels to deep rich jewel tones, metallics, and chromatic layers, adding colours to your candle will surely brighten up your space and spark your creative side.
There’s a wide variety of candle dyes to choose from. Though you may have to consider the type of wax, wick, and scent that will be used in the formulation when choosing the right type and amount of colourant to use in a candle.
Candles are often coloured with specially formulated pigments and dyes. Though dyes and pigments have different properties, they are used to achieve a variety of results. Pigments are used to colour the outside of a candle, while dyes are used to colour the candle from the inside out.
Pigments are small, suspended colour particles that build a solid wall of colour. They don't melt, migrate, or "bleed," so they're not as prone to colour fade as dyes are. However, they don't normally burn well, and if they do, the colour particles will clog the wick.
Such as mica, a naturally occurring mineral that can be found all over the world, and many micas are covered with other minerals including iron and tin oxides. Mica has a lovely reflective appearance, such as glitter gold, but with a finer consistency and particle size.
Its shimmery powder dyes made of silicate minerals reflect light and produce a sparkling effect when applied to candles. Mica pigments, when used carefully, are better used as a finishing touch to your candle.
Candle dye is a synthetic chemical that is made especially for use in candle wax. These are water-soluble and have optimum colour. They are most commonly made from anilines (an oily chemical substrate).
Dyes are available in two forms: liquid and powder. Block and dye flakes perform well for medium and darker shades, while liquids are great for mixing colours and achieving high colour saturation and accuracy. Dyes offer you a lot of power over the hue of a colour. Since dyes are easily combustible, they won't clog a wick and will only have a minor impact on a candle's burn efficiency.
If colour accuracy is important to you, liquid candle dye might be best. Since liquid candle dye is simple to use (due to its liquid nature), you should be able to achieve colour consistency. When working with large batches of paraffin wax, dye blocks will be more ideal for achieving darker and vivid colours, particularly reds, greens, and blues. It's similar to dye chips, but the concentration is much higher.
HERBS AND SPICES
Herbs and spices are less common, but they are an alternative option for colouring candles naturally.
The colour you get depends on the herb you use, such as wild celery for light yellow, sunflower seeds for deep purple, ground lichen for orange, elder for blue, parsley and artichoke for green, and so on.
The herbs may be heated in oil to remove the colour or applied directly to the hot wax, but the plant parts must be strained before dipping the candles. You’ll need to make sure the plant material is completely dry to avoid mildew. Herb plants may be finely chopped or crushed to help unleash their natural fragrance in a candle.
In spices, there is turmeric and paprika that produces bright orange colours, while saffron produces blue and purple hues. Though if you use ground spices in the form of powders, the spice would behave more like a pigment than a dye in this case.
In addition to using herbs as a colourant, herbal leaf shapes and flower types include a plethora of decorating options. These can be used on, in, or around candles in a variety of ways, and the fun part is experimenting. Dried calendula flowers can be used as a decorative addition, amongst many other herbs and flowers available.
MISCELLANEOUS SUPPLIES NEEDED
After you've gathered all of the necessary candle making supplies, you can begin stocking up on tools that will make candle making a breeze.
Double Boiler. A double boiler, also known as a Bain Marie, is low-cost, adaptable, and simple to use. Since it does not burn the wax, it is widely used to melt candles. It's made by pouring wax from a pouring pot or jug into a water-filled pot. It's made to promote even and slow heating.
Thermometer. It can aid in the management of wax heating and cooling. A good thermometer comes in handy because candle making is essentially a big tool in handling the "thermal life cycle" of wax. For ease of use, you can use a glass thermometer or a more advanced infrared thermometer.
Scale. Since almost everything in candle making is measured by weight, from wax to fragrance oil, a scale is needed. Whatever scale you use, the most important thing to remember is that it must have an accurate reading.
Wick Holder. When pouring wax into the container, the Wick Holder will keep the wick in place. If you're looking for a low-cost wick holder, popsicle sticks work well because they're lightweight and can span wide diameters.
Container. Lastly, the type of container you use will be determined by the final appearance of your product. There are only three safety guidelines to note when selecting a container: it must not catch fire (it must be heat-resistant), it must not leak, and it must not crack or break.
Even if your candle burns properly, the wax pool and flame become extremely hot as it burns, and your container must be able to withstand this heat. Be sure to account for the container's shape as well. If it has a big mouth but is narrow at the bottom, it will become increasingly hot as it burns and can break.
We suggest candle jars (glass or metal) to use as containers. Choose a high-quality candle mould if you're making free-standing pillars (aluminium, plastic, or silicone)
WHERE TO FIND QUALITY CANDLE MAKING SUPPLIES NEAR ME
Here, at N-essentials Australia, we offer you a wide range of ingredients that are suited for a variety of applications including candle making, soap making and cosmetics. Every item we have can also be purchased in bulk quantities at a wholesale price! If you have any questions or need more information, our friendly staff are always available to assist you. You can reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org directly.